4:59 pm - 02/22/2013

Lena Dunham Responds to Anger Over Comedian's N-Word Tweet

Lena Dunham didn't speak to the press at the Writers Guild Awards last Sunday, nor did she give a long speech when she accepted the trophy for best new series. And yet, she still finds herself embroiled in a controversy that launched during the show, even though it was none of her doing.

Comedian and presenter Lisa Lampanelli, who is famously known for her foul mouth, tweeted a photo of herself and Dunham at the awards, with the caption "Me with my n---a @LenaDunham of @HBOGirls - I love this beyotch!" Predictably, the tweet fired up critics, angry at Lampanelli -- a white woman -- for using the word.

One writer, Shayla Pierce, wrote several stories for various online publications expressing her outrage, and then took to Twitter to call out Dunham for not condemning Lampanelli.

".@LenaDunham has showed her true colors on this whole n-word debacle. Her silence speaks volumes," she tweeted. "I don't think I'll be watching @girlsHBO anymore. And I say that with honest sadness... Lena advertises herself as a progressive but she's chosen not to address the situation. She seems phony to me now."

Dunham responded on Twitter, writing that she would never use the n-word and that Lampanelli's tweet made her "supremely uncomfortable," but stayed silent because "twitter debates breed more twitter debates."

She added that "140 characters will never be enough for the kind of dialogue that will actually help us address issues of race and class," and then commended Pierce for a "beautifully written piece," apologizing for any discomfort she may have felt.

Pierce happily accepted her response, writing, "Thank you so much. And I do <3 you and your work. Thanks for addressing this *hugsies* @lenadunham."

For her part, Lampanelli has defended her use of the word, saying "The N-word ending in 'er' is far different context from the word ending in 'a.' Ask any person who knows the urban dictionary, it means 'friend."

loudpunk 22nd-Feb-2013 11:31 pm (UTC)
please tell me how so, oh wise one
spartacus 22nd-Feb-2013 11:36 pm (UTC)
oh shut the fuck up.

ps this is just me being reasonable.
loudpunk 22nd-Feb-2013 11:37 pm (UTC)
whew, one line - and worse yet, the real crux of my argument. you got me.
spartacus 22nd-Feb-2013 11:39 pm (UTC)
you still sound mad
imnotasquirrel 22nd-Feb-2013 11:40 pm (UTC)
delicious_pocky 22nd-Feb-2013 11:57 pm (UTC)
you're the one that sounds ridiculous in this thread tbh
crystalzelda 22nd-Feb-2013 11:42 pm (UTC)
Well since you asked, I'll deign come down from my mountain of wisdom to educate you.

This post deals with racism and race relations - the comment that started this thread responded in kind. It is on topic, it spoke of the race relations and issues that surround Lena Dunham, whom the article is about. You told them to "shut the fuck up" and that it wasn't Lena Dunham's responsibility to have anyone in her show she doesn't want to. That's perfectly fair - it's a free country. She's free to put only white people in her show, and we're free to criticize her for it, for having a show that's supposed to be set in Brooklyn, NYC and having little to no PoC in her show, and none whom are main, recurring characters. See how that freedom works?

So you can honestly pack it up when you tell people to shut the fuck up about the very real, very pervasive erasure of PoC in the media, something Dunham happily contributes to as she is lauded for being a feminist and a progressive.
loudpunk 22nd-Feb-2013 11:49 pm (UTC)
this is the continuing argument against girls and lena dunham and my god, i thought we put this to rest already. even trying to lop her into this controversy, when she didn't SAY the word, did not COMPLY with the word, nor even condone it, shows that this article and any detractors are actually NOT responding in kind, but creating a whole other issue out of nothing.

i'm a hispanic and have visited white friends in brooklyn and manhattan (and a slew of other, very urban and diverse areas) who had mostly, if not all, white friends. are they racist? are they terrible people? have they done some grave, global injustice? she is writing about four white girls that happen to live in a very urban, diverse landscape. many of them, and the supporting players, are Jewish. Jewish people, believe it or not, exist too! and i gotta tell ya, man have they been disenfranchised in the past...i mean that holocaust? wow! but how brave of her to put them at the forefront of her show. except wait, their religious beliefs are not at the forefront. racial isses, again...not at the forefront. this is not a show meant to tackle racial issues, that is not the focal point of this show. that can be another show. that could be another, great, fascinating, world-inspiring show. it's not this show. this show never intended to be that show. so answer me this: if lena dunham were to kowtow to the unrealistic, and quite franky completely unnecessary, demands of diversifying her cast...but not with "black" black people, just black people, would that change a damn thing? she's damned if she is, damned if she isn't, so in turn, i'd ask you that if she has the freedom to express her own creative ability as she sees fit, all of your unnecessary yammering about how it doesn't fit YOUR prerogative seems like a big waste of time now, doesn't it?
screwhim 22nd-Feb-2013 11:54 pm (UTC)
ignore that person they don't even read the posts before they start their bullshit wanks

i agree with you 100%
crystalzelda 22nd-Feb-2013 11:57 pm (UTC)
lolll "to rest"? This privileged, ignorant mindset I love it <3

sis there is no "rest". There is no end to this fucking bullshit cause that's the reality millions of people wake up to every damn single day and the fact that you think it'll all blow over after a set number of posts on ONTD speaks to just how high your ivory tower is.

The issue isn't about whether or not she said the word, we're all aware she didn't. But yes, it's on topic to bring up the fact that her show is absolutely a big fat 0 when it comes to inclusivity and exposure of PoC, and that's the truth of it when she sets her show in a diverse area, calls it girls and thinks it ought to speak to this new generation of women. Listen hon nobody really gives a fuck about your anecdotal evidence or your friends who don't know anyone who aren't white.

And did you seriously bring up the Holocaust? The fuck is your point? Yes, Jewish people have been persecuted, who is denying this? So have women, and she's gotten the accolades for presenting these characters. That is neither here nor there when it comes to talks of have PoC on her show, or the fact that she thinks we're so foreign and weird she literally cannot write us in, or apparently hire a writer who isn't exactly like her. Nobody's faulting her for not talking about racial issues, we're faulting her for having 0 PoC, is that hard to understand? Guess it is for you. PS - not all PoC's lives revolve around race, so yeah, she could have PoC without addressing huge issues when it comes to race.

"Black" black people? The fuck? Like you have gone off the deep end and you're getting really dangerously close to offensive as fuck territory, back away now. You're an ignorant mess, b, open a book instead of wasting all our time with your nonsensical yammerings.
delicious_pocky 23rd-Feb-2013 12:03 am (UTC)
well-said but it's not like any argument about her would make any difference. lena dunhan detractors, at this point, doesn't have any valid arguments. she is not the moral enemy they want her to be but, because she is a successful rich girl, they'll grasp at straws and use any argument to make her seem so.
heart_iswild 23rd-Feb-2013 12:37 am (UTC)
stop it, you're amazing <3333333

i love how ppl think it's lenas responsibility to represent them. uhhhhh no.
loudpunk 22nd-Feb-2013 11:52 pm (UTC)
to further my argument, she has gone on record and apologized directly to a prominent black writer who called her out, and they are on better terms...and yet still, still!, people now think this other writer is some kind of race traitor for making nice.

WHAT does one have to do then? what progress are we making, and why are we continuing to attack?
booster_blue 23rd-Feb-2013 05:43 am (UTC)
Criticism =/= attack. When you decide to put a piece of work out there for public consumption, you better be ready to take the barbs with the praise. And if you can't handle people pointing out flaws in your work, then you need to rethink how badly you want your stuff out there.

Lena can apologize until she's blue in the face, but hanging out with Lisa, who already has a history of pulling racist shit and then hiding behind the shield of ~comedy, she was flirting with more race drama. Her outrage at the tweet is a joke, as well. Why? Because she only spoke out against after the public came at the two of them. She knew that shit was wrong then, and didn't say anything. Her silence was as good as encouragement.
saintvlas22 23rd-Feb-2013 12:59 am (UTC)
She can be a feminist - a racially ignorant feminist who only looks out or acknowledges other white women.

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